Tuesday, 20 February 2018

Green 50: South West's most progressive green companies recognised

Business leaders and sustainability innovators from across the South West gathered at Bristol and Bath Science Park last week to celebrate the region’s most progressive green companies.
The Green 50 Awards, which was sponsored by eco printing and mailing firm CFH Docmail and renewable energy supplier Good Energy, saw businesses acknowledged for driving forward change in organisational sustainability.
Gavin Thompson, editor of The Western Daily Press, hosted the ceremony.
He said: "There have been steps along the way already. When I put out our recycling every week I think ‘we used to throw all of this away to be buried in a hole in the ground’. But I also think, ‘look at all that plastic’. There is a long way to go.
"I do not believe this change will be brought about by direct action. Rather this will be driven by consumers. And business meeting those consumer demands, and, in some cases, leading it.
"That’s why we created the West of England Green 50. We want to nudge that transition along. We want to inspire change."
Waste management solutions company GENeco, which is based in Avonmouth, was presented with a judges’ award by Dave Broadway, chairman of CFH Docmail.
Dave said: “We are fighting against climate change. We are the few and we have to do more and more to save the rest of them from themselves.”
Bristol-based ethical bank Triodos was also presented with a judges’ award by Dr Randall Bowen, director of business services at Good Energy, who pointed out that “if we don’t do something about climate change we are going to be in a very sticky situation.”

The GDPR – The Basics

The GDPR provides the first shake up in data protection legislation since the Data Protection Act in 1998.
As May 25th 2018 looms large, the responsibilities and requirements of the GDPR have taken on mythical proportions with organisations racing to delete databases, qualify records and appoint Data Protection Officers.
However the GDPR is really about common sense and process and boils down to checks and balances which if properly conducted will mitigate risk, fulfil the requirement to act responsibly and ensure that the data of your residents/ tenants is only used for legitimate purposes.
In simple terms GDPR has real teeth and is there to safe guard the individual, it marks a shift from a general directive to a legal requirement and no matter what happens with Brexit , it will still apply.
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is a ruling intended to protect the personal data of those who live within the European Union. It will provide a greater level of control to people over their personal data and how it is used.

The central sentiment is that data belongs to the individual and NOT to you – it’s their data not your data.

Depending on the letter you are planning to send then different rules apply. If you are sending out marketing letters and have prepared your database yourself then you should have acquired the relevant permissions. Equally if you have purchased your data then you need to make sure the provider has obtained consent.

When you are processing transactional letters such as invoices or legitimate service information you can usually rely on the legal basis of legitimate interest. Just make sure you keep appropriate records to show that you are relying on the legal basis of legitimate interest for processing this data and that your privacy notices are clear and up to date.

'Controllers' and 'Processors' of data need to abide by GDPR legislation. A controller is responsible for how and why the data is processed, while the processor acts on the controller’s behalf.

You will need to develop technical and organisational measures to demonstrate compliance with GDPR. If you are working with an outsourced data processor you must ensure that you have updated contractual terms.

Get to grips with Data protection impact assessments (DPIAs) which help identify, assess and mitigate or minimise privacy risks with data processing activities. They’re particularly relevant when a new data processing process, system or technology is being introduced and are a handy weapon in the war against cyber crime.

DPIAs also support the accountability principle, as they help organisations comply with the requirements of the GDPR and demonstrate that appropriate measures have been taken to ensure compliance.

Failure to adequately conduct a DPIA where appropriate is a breach of the GDPR and could lead to fines of up to 2% of an organisation's annual global turnover or €10 million – whichever is greater.

The GDPR mandates a DPIA be conducted where data processing “is likely to result in a high risk to the rights and freedoms of natural persons”.
Finally you will need an understanding of the changes to data retention and to explore the likely legal grounds for retention of particular data that housing associations commonly require.

An ongoing, regular review will keep everyone on their toes, identify any glitches (and help you sleep at night).

The information in this article is for guidance only and does not constitute legal advice. We will be updating the sector regularly over the coming months and will be happy to answer any questions you may have. Call 01761 416311/ 07834 173288.

Monday, 19 February 2018

Nick Britton runs Bath Half for Crohn's and Colitis UK

Everyone knows that running a half marathon is tough, but in two (or in my case, closer to three) hours’ time the challenge is at an end and any pain or discomfort starts to disappear. 

I have watched for many years as those close to me with Inflammatory Bowel Disease have battled bravely against something from which there is no relief, and for which there is currently no cure.

It is estimated that more than 300,000 people in the UK suffer from either Crohn’s or Colitis, so you will almost certainly know someone who suffers from either condition even if you do not know it. Too often it is a condition that is hidden from view, with people suffering the often chronic symptoms in silence.

I am aiming to raise £250 for Crohn’s and Colitis UK by running the Bath Half Marathon on the 4th March 2018. This will provide enough funding for two days of research into Inflammatory Bowel Disease, with the hope of finding a cure.

This will be my second Bath Half Marathon, with my first coming last year only a few days after completing a couch to 5k Beginner’s Running Course with Somer Athletic Club. One year on and I am feeling much more prepared, hoping to beat the previous time of 2:49.

Please help me to raise money to find a cure for Inflammatory Bowel Disease by donating at my Just Giving Page (www.justgiving.com/fundraising/nickbritton), and find out more about this great charity here: www.crohnsandcolitis.org.uk/about-inflammatory-bowel-disease

MP presents ‘Flu Hero of the Year’ award to Norfolk surgery receptionist

Jessica Bane, Management Assistant and Receptionist at Ludham and Stalham Green surgeries, was presented her award by Lib Dem MP Norman Lamb on Friday 19th January after winning our national competition to find the UK’s ‘Flu Hero of the Year’. The competition recognises the outstanding and innovative contributions made by staff within GP practices, to increase uptake of flu vaccinations.

Ms Bane has managed the Ludham and Stalham Green surgeries’ flu clinics for the last two years and has seen an increase in flu vaccine uptake figures. Some of her initiatives have included inviting local healthcare organisations and charities such as Age UK and Norfolk Carers Support to host information stands at Ludham and Stalham’s flu clinics, and improving the efficiency of clinician’s flu vaccination information.

Mr Lamb said: “It was fantastic to present Jessica with this award. Her dedication to the community is admirable, particularly at a time when flu vaccinations are so crucial. She’s part of a great team at Ludham and Stalham Green surgeries.”

Ms Bane said: “I am very proud to have won CFH Docmail Flu Hero of the Year 2017 and privileged to have my award presented by Norman Lamb. I thoroughly enjoy organising the annual flu clinics, introducing innovative ideas each year and increasing our uptake. I am passionate about ensuring that as many patients as possible are vaccinated and protected against the flu and appreciate that my hard work has been recognised.”